Monday 27 February 2023

My early 2023 update and unforseen twist

It has been quite a while since my last blog post for varying reasons. The good was a trip overseas last September-October which ended with a visit to the Great Electric Train Show in Milton Keynes on 9th October 2022. I had planned on publishing some photos with a couple of blog posts after that but family and work commitments got in the way. And then it seemed the timing had passed.


I also had a wonderful visit to the home of legendary British modeller and author, Tony Wright. I must say this was a real highlight seeing "Little Bytham" in person. Tony was a most accommodating host and he and his wife made me feel most welcome. I also bought Tony's book about the building of this exceptional layout which is both informative and captivating. Again, I was slow to get the photos from my phone to the computer, albeit it takes me several goes to get the actual transfer to work!

I had lots of plans and intentions for 2023, starting with some long service leave in March and possibly additional leave mid-year. I am still working on my US layout and had plans to accelerate things in 2023. There are several upcoming model railway exhibitions I was planning on attending: Forestville (4-5 March), Canberra (26-27 March), Sandown (11-13 March), and the Australian Narrow Gauge Convention over the Easter weekend in April, and the Epping Club's exhibition at Rosehill (6-7 May). And then there was possible travel in the second half of the year. However, these plans are in disarray for the moment.

Alas, I ended up with a heart attack. Fortunately, the attack itself wasn't too bad but the discovery of blocked arteries was a real shock. I spent all last week in hospital and had my first two stents put in last Friday. Got a couple more to go in the coming weeks. At age 61 who never smoked, was never overweight, and had a reasonably healthy diet (but not enough exercise), I have been rocked to my core.

Amazingly, I am back home but instructed not to do anything (well, I can type a bit as long as I can keep my concentration) for at least two weeks and then to take further direction from my cardiologist. The next couple of stents can't go in for a few weeks apparantly. Funnily enough, you'd think that having permission to do nothing would be a good thing, but it's not: just leads to more thinking and worrying!

I am lucky to have an engrossing hobby and friends in model railways that will help move my mind into more positive thoughts and activities. Thanks to LF, DL, DM, JP, and a couple of other people who helped ease my mind over the past week. Thanks also to MD who shared his story with me, and my local NMRA club members.

I hope to get to the Canberra Exhibition but this will depend on the date for the next "procedure". And I'd like to think, at the very least, I'll be all set to go to the Epping Club's exhibition in May.

My 2023 is now a lot different to what I was looking forward to at the start of the year. But at least I am able to pen this blog post and hope to pen a whole lot more (plus modelling) throughout 2023.